Sunday, December 14, 2014

Contemporary Art: Neo Rauch @ David Zwirner, New York

(Drivebycuriosity) - It looks like that contemporary art is ruled by the German`s: Gerhard Richter, Sigmar Polke, Anselm Kiefer and Josef Beuys shaped the thinking of many artists in the last 5 decades. Neo Rauch, born in 1960, belongs to a younger generation. The German is one of the rising stars in the art world. He grew up in the communist Eastern Germany, influenced by the so-called socialist realism, a style of realistic art that was developed in the Soviet Union, and studied figurative painting (artinamerica). According to Wikipedia his "paintings mine the intersection of his personal history with the politics of industrial alienation. His work reflects the influence of socialist realism, and owes a debt to Surrealists Giorgio de Chirico and René Magritte" (wikipedia).

The gallery  David Zwirner, New York (533 West 19th Street, close to 12th Avenue) has a now a exhibition with new paintings by the German artist  (through December 2014 davidzwirner). They call the show "At the Well".

I liked the paintings, which are mostly from 2014, a lot. Each picture seems to tell a story with a riddle in it. The titles of the paintings don´t give much away, if anything, so that observer can speculate on her own what the artist might tell his audience.

At the top of this post you can see "Der blaue Fisch" ("The blue fish"). Like the other paintings in this collection the image could be a scene in a movie. Why does a woman climb out of the fish´s stommage?  Did she get saved like the biblican "Jonah"?

"Hüter der Nacht" ("Guardian of the Night") is even more strange and puzzling. What does the woman with the yellow piranha-like gloves aim to achieve? Does she want to heal or to attack the man who lies in the bed? Why is the man in the background beating the drum?

"Heillichtung" ("Healing Glade") seems also to deal with a sick or wounded man. Are the men who surround the patient scientists who debate about a possible cure? Is he still alive?

The painting "Marina" above this paragraph looks like a glance into an alternative universe. Are these men scavenging some sealife? Does the half-naked woman behind belong to them or to the sea lifeforms?

"Über den Dächern" ("Above the Roofs") seems to show some ritual. Are they dancing?

The painting "Skulpteurin" ("Sculptress) could be a view into an alternative art studio.

Sorry, couldn`t find the title of this painting. It looks like that soldiers detected a very special car which was hidden behind some magic mushrooms.

"Am Brunnen" ("At the Well") gives also a lot space for speculation

Above this paragraph you can see "Das Horn" ("The Horn"), some unknown painting and "Der Felsenwirt" ("The rock innkeeper").


1 comment:

  1. yes. wow. this movement is underexposed in the artworld- i've never heard mention of it or seen any examples of it before going to the Broad Contemporary LA- thanks for posting all of these